Giessen, Germany (Hesse)
Dear Mudder and Dad,
Here it is past the middle of February and here I am still sitting and still wondering. Today we discharged the last of our DEF’s and that means that we’re out of a job. I really haven’t the slightest idea what they are going to do with us but as usual they have everything in such a state of confusion that nobody knows anything. Today they’ve issued about twenty contradictory orders. The Lieutenant called up and asked what we are going to do now and they told us that we’d probably get another company of DEF’s. I don’t see that. Where are they going to come from? If you discharge all the POW’s more of them don’t just materialize out of thin air. As far as I’m concerned I’d just as soon sit right here until my turn comes to go home. That shouldn’t be too long now. Beyond that I know that I can have a better time right here than I can anywhere else. All I want is to go home and there doesn’t seem to be any reason for me to stay now. About the only thing that we can do now is security guard work and I don’t care to think about guard duty at this stage of the game. Well, it shouldn’t be too long now. Men with 48 points are supposed to start moving into the pipeline starting next week. Occupation is a none too pleasant job at best and I’ll be glad to be out of it.
Your mail is coming in trickles. Yesterday I received two letters which were written on the 27th. of January but today I got one dated the 17th. Now I probably won’t get anything for a week. It’s really a pain in the neck.
My truck is on the fritz again so I’m not doing much of anything. That always makes me feel blue as hell. Anymore if I don’t have at least some sort of work to keep me occupied I feel like the devil. I read all the bad news in the newspaper and see the helluva state everything is in around me then I feel like crying in my beer. If feel like another Hamlet or something. I guess that I’m just getting “Fed up with the setup” or “ETO Happy”.
Well, that’s enough of the grief that weights me down. How’s everything at home? I see by the paper that they are again clamping down on the rationing. I suppose that everybody is mad although I can’t see any other thing we can do. Say what you will we just can’t let people starve. When things get that bad people will grasp any straw in order to save themselves. In Germany for instance it’s exactly what the Nazis who have gone underground hope for. As long as the people get enough to eat they will be satisfied and even consider themselves fortunate to be rid of Fascism; when they begin to starve they’ll do anything to save themselves. It’s only human. That’s what the Nazis are depending on. They want to be able to say “See, we are no worse than they are.” These birds who sit at home on their fat fannies fail to realize the difference between right and wrong in all Europe is balanced one way or the other by a piece of meat or a loaf of bread. You really have no idea how badly beaten these people are. I don’t mean only the Germans. I mean everyone. They’ve practically lost all hope for the future. They feel stuck and don’t know what to do. I may sound like a radical or something but I can tell you one thing. That is that there’s a great change coming. If we take the bull by the horns we can make change favorable to us. If we don’t someone else will and that’s no kidding. All Europe wants to push ahead but in what direction? As I said before if worse comes to worse they’ll grab at anything. It may be Nazism, it’s not dead yet, Communism or what have you but it’ll be something. I suppose that I sound like a sermon again but I think about these things a lot and I just have to get them off my chest.
Well, that’s about all for tonight again. I hope I haven’t bored you too damn much.